Brisbane five-piece The Art Of Sleeping capped off their first national headlining tour with a cracking gig at Northcote Social Club. Celebrating the launch of their latest single ‘Above The Water’, they were supported by New South Wales family band Tigertown and local songstress Kathryn Rollins.

Considering it was the final night of the tour, particular antics and frivolity could have been expected, however, it was quite subdued.

The acoustic musings of Kathryn Rollins sat well with the early turn out. Despite the small size of the Northcote band room Rollins’ incredible voice ripped throughout the venue. If anything the sounds were a little somber and subdued to really kick the evening off.

Tigertown have been steadily making a name for themselves with their dreamy indie pop, most notably taking full advantage of their incredible vocal talents. The band is entirely made up of family members with various connections and their comfort with each other on stage is truly reflected when playing their music. Managing to put the crowd at ease with their amazing harmonies enough to get you hooked.

Despite the absence of regular drummer Jean-Paul Malengret who’s busy getting married, The Art Of Sleeping produced an incredibly tight and lively set. Fans got a good taste of new material with a set dominated by tracks from their upcoming EP (due out later this year after just signing with Dew Process).

The band’s new single ‘Above The Water’ was well received and worked particularly well in the live setting, with the dynamics and crescendos even more pronounced than its recorded version.

While generally the sound was incredible front of stage, the reverb-drenched vocals of singer Caleb Hodges were – regrettably – slightly overdone. Obviously the emotional and dramatic aspects of the music lend themselves to these additional flourishes, but in the presence of such a strong voice they were a little overbearing.

A definite highlight of the set was an incredible cover of Fleet Foxes’ ‘Blue Ridge Mountains’, in which the headliners were joined by members of Tigertown who provided sultry, spot-on harmonies and an extra rhythmic feeling.

Undoubtedly it takes a brave band to attempt to cover a Fleet Foxes tune but with the help of Tigertown, The Art Of Sleeping absolutely nailed this one.

Closing track and recent Triple J favourite ‘Empty Hands’ soared in the small space, more suited to larger venues but certainly no less enjoyable. Hodge’s vocals once again truly stood out above the strong rhythmic pulse and piercing guitar, leaving a devoted crowd truly satisfied and new comers converted.

-Gabe Andrews

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